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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:58 pm 
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Location: maidstone, kent
First of all I'd like to thank everyone for taking the time to respond to my post.

I must be fair to the school and the teacher. The Head of Year is very approachable and I know that I can contact her - I have done in the past, but I do not really want to escalate the matter at this stage. The English teacher has said that she would help - perhaps I am being too hasty! At the moment I am just looking into the options available to me to help DD. It is DD who wants to take the English GCSE in Year 10 alongside her other GCSEs. She is a very determined child and has already decided which subjects she wants to study in Year 11!! The option is there for her to take the exam in Year 11, and it may be that is when she will have to take it. However, my gut reaction is that she has the ability to take the GCSE in Year 10 and I want to do my best to help her.

I do take on board the comment about reading. DD is a reluctant reader. ourmaminhavana has made some crucial points. From discussions with DD, she is not addressing the questions precisely nor does she understand the usage of literary devices. Until this term she was obtaining A grades - but at the moment she seems on a downward spiral. What doesn't help is that she rarely speaks up in class. In other subjects she is always the first to raise her hand. She has lost her confidence in English and finds it hard to take criticism publicly. As a result she 'keeps her head down' and dreads every English lesson.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 2:15 pm 
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sasha wrote:
It is DD who wants to take the English GCSE in Year 10 alongside her other GCSEs. She is a very determined child and has already decided which subjects she wants to study in Year 11!!


There is presumably some background to this that is not obvious. Most people choose subjects at the end of year nine to study in years ten and eleven, with a handful being pulled forward (most commonly maths). Is this a school where they do a bunch of GCSEs at the end of year ten and then do another bunch in year 11, without doing English? Is this single or double English?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:47 pm 
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Location: maidstone, kent
Sorry if I have not been that clear. They choose their subjects at the end of Year 8 to study in Years 9 & 10, and then take their GCSEs in Year 10 (they take coursework assessments in Years 9 & 10). If they need 3 years to study English and/or Maths then they can take these exams in Year 11. Core & Additional Science is taken in Year 10 whereas Triple Science is taken in Year 11. It is quite a flexible approach. 4 subjects are studied in Year 11 which are a mixture of AS and GCSEs. If DD were to take English in Year 11, then her choice of other subjects would be reduced to 3. It would not be the end of the world - but it is not what she wants. Please don't think I'm a pushy parent - I just want to support DD. If it became evident that taking English in Year 10 would produce a low grade then I am sure I could persuade DD that it would be in her best interests to take it later. However, we have not reached that stage yet. I am just trying to find ways to help her master the subject.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:50 pm 
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All the research shows early entry is not in the interests of the child. Universities look at the grades not when the exams were taken ...

Why do the school do this?!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:01 pm 
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Sasha I think there is a level of maturity required for the study of literature too, an insight and understanding of human nature that comes with age and experience. This is my own personal opinion, but I really don't see the benefit of children being pushed to do it early. :(


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:58 pm 
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sasha wrote:
4 subjects are studied in Year 11 which are a mixture of AS and GCSEs.


Why on earth do schools do this, other than to fiddle their "GCSE" figures by claiming that an AS, even quite a poor one, is the equivalent of some number of GCSEs (four?) Thank God Gove is going to put a stop to this. It's not in the students' interests, because most competitive universities only make offers based on the most recent sitting of A2.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:34 pm 
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English is about maturity of thought, interpretation and expression, surely its better for her to do it when she is more mature, confident and achieve better at the end of year 11? Yes she will have one less subject in Year 11 but its better than doing it early and sacrifice getting a good grade.

See page 11 here https://www.education.gov.uk/publicatio ... -GCSEs.pdf to see how early entry English results compare to sitting in Year 11.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 6:37 pm 
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I don't think its a question of a "high" or "low" grade. If a child is not going to get an A* then it is not worth doing the exam early.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 6:42 pm 
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TBH even if they were going to get an A* I still don't think it's a particularly good idea to take it early.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 7:54 pm 
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sherry_d wrote:
English is about maturity of thought, interpretation and expression, surely its better for her to do it when she is more mature, confident and achieve better at the end of year 11? Yes she will have one less subject in Year 11 but its better than doing it early and sacrifice getting a good grade.

See page 11 here https://www.education.gov.uk/publicatio ... -GCSEs.pdf to see how early entry English results compare to sitting in Year 11.


Thanks for the link-it was an interesting read.


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